It has been said many times that using biometric scanners as your only means of security is doomed to fail. They have been beaten before and, now, Brazilian doctors have devised a way to bypass biometric scanners using fake fingers.
Thaune Nunes Ferreira, a doctor at the hospital in the town of Ferraz de Vasconcelos, greater São Paulo, was arrested with six fake fingers with the fingerprints of six other people. She is accused of using prosthetic fingers to fool the biometric employee attendance device.
The town’s mayor, Acir Fillo, has also asked five employees of the medical service said to have been involved to step aside, while the local council has launched a public inquiry into the matter.
Brazil’s ministry of health has said it will launch an inquiry of its own into the local hospital.
Mr Fillo says that the police investigation showed that some 300 public employees in the town, whom he described as ”an army of ghosts”, had been receiving pay without going to work.
Bankok Post says that there is video footage of Ferreira clocking in with the fake fingers.
Globo television showed footage of a doctor touching her finger to the device, then using two fake digits to do the same for colleagues, and taking delivery of slips of paper indicating they had in fact clocked in to work.
That way it looked like there were doctors on duty when there was just one.
Another television network said it was the head of the emergency room that ran the scam and that his daughter had not worked a day in three years but got paid all the time.
Ferreira says that she was forced to clock in for other doctors as it was a condition of her employment.
The Province added:
Ferreira confessed to using different fake fingers bearing the prints of 11 fellow doctors and 20 nurses in order to pretend they were showing up to work five overnight shifts each month, instead of just one, police said.
Ferreira also said the staff at the Ferraz Vasconcelos Hospital paid $2,400 per month to participate.
The problem with these machines is that there is a trust factor. It would not have taken much time to check, for example, to see if the daughter of the emergency room head was actually working. Blindly believing that biometric scanners will solve your problems is just asking for the massive amount of fraud and abuse that you receive. Biometric scanners, practically, are only useful in highly secured and controlled environments where someone is there to monitor the person using the scanner. Used anywhere else and they become a broken system rife with abuse.